I made a tutorial back in 2009 on how to make crockpot roast beef. It was perfect. A simple and basic post on how to make a kick-ass crockpot roast beef. But, the photos aren’t great. I was learning about foodie photography back then.
I decided to to put together another post about it but I kind of screwed things up but you know what? It was still delicious!
Consider this a fool-proof way to make roast beef in your crockpot.
I bought a very lean piece of meat. With little fat to insulate the meat over a long period of time, I should have realized it would dry out. But! I did remember to season the entire piece very well.
In a hot pan with hot vegetable oil I seared it on all sides. This was good!
I chopped up the flavourings and the “nest” for the bottom of the crockpot while the meat was browning: carrots, celery, garlic, onion… Got out the thyme and bay leaves.
See?! I was so confident. I mean look at the caramelization! Beautiful.
I put the “nest” on the bottom. You do not want meat to stew in its own juices on the bottom so I like this technique.
This time I thought I would be smart and use Naked Grape’s Unoaked Merlot instead of white wine. Much more classic and classy for making a gravy later on.
I put the beef on top.
I used the wine to deglaze the brown bits from the pan.
I poured it on top.
I added some water to make sure that the pan would not end up dry. But remember, there was very little fat so I actually needed much more flavour for a liquid and more of it in general. I wish I had used beef broth instead!
Also, because I now have a huge crockpot, I did not realize that more liquid would be mandatory for a moist roast beef too. Ack!
Then I realized that I only had six hours until dinner time so I had it on high for the entire time. Big mistake! I should have just had it on for two hours and then move to low for a while.
As a result, the meat ended up looking almost burned! 🙁 I could have cried.
Yes, it was super dark and not in a good way. I thought I had totally screwed it up.
That is what gravy is for! LOL. So OK, if you want that perfectly cooked roast beef with a slightly pink interior, this is not the approach for you.
But if you are worried about making a roast beef for the first time and have no idea what you are doing, consider this fool-proof. This was still delicious and made great sandwiches the next day.
Just make sure to get a roast with some fat, use beef broth and a lot of it and start early enough to let cook on low all day.
For the sandwiches, I used my mom’s trick of warming (no more cooking!) the meat in the leftover gravy.
I screwed up on just about every level and it was still pretty damn delicious! Remember, do not be intimidated by big pieces of meat. The great thing about cooking in a crockpot is it can be pretty forgiving.
Learn from my mistakes and enjoy roast beef for Thanksgiving or Christmas. It is a great turkey substitute and if you make fabulous Yorkshire pudding with lots of gravy, every foodie at the table is going to be happy.